|Sensitivity to strangers|
|Affection for family|
|Suitable for first-time owners|
|Ease of grooming|
- 1 The Labrador Retriever is a dog that needs to be in constant motion to be healthy: let’s see all the information and some curiosities about one of the most adored dog breeds in the World
- 2 Labrador Retriever: History and Origins
- 3 Labrador Retriever: Physical Characteristics
- 4 How long can a Labrador Retriever live?
- 5 Labrador Retriever: Training
- 6 Labrador Retriever: Temperament
- 7 Labrador Retriever: Breeders
- 8 Labrador Retriever: Certified Documentation
- 9 Labrador Retriever: Price, and Puppies For Sale
- 10 Labrador Retriever: Video
The Labrador Retriever is a dog that needs to be in constant motion to be healthy: let’s see all the information and some curiosities about one of the most adored dog breeds in the World
The Labrador Retriever, usually known as Labrador, was created in the 19th century. It is a dog that has an amazing physical resistance and literally loves water. If it ever has the opportunity to take a bath or a splash in the water, it will be happy to do it.
A unique characteristic of the Labrador is its versatility; it is not only a great companion dog, but also it can be trained and used as a hunting dog, especially a retriever dog.
The Labrador always does its absolute best; it is used as a drug detection dog, also to find explosives and as a tracking dog. In many countries it is used as a guide dog to lead blind people. Besides, it is the perfect therapy dog because it is very social and it is never aggressive.
This dog breed loves the company of its family and has a need to socialize. These characteristics make the Labrador an amazing playmate for children. But keep in mind that Labrador puppies are very energetic, so you must have caution when it is in the company of little children. Also, it is not aggressive with strangers or other dogs.
You should always plan activities to keep your dog busy, because this dog breed does not know how to stay still and gets bored easily; this behavior could lead it to chew everything it finds in its way.
Labrador Retriever: History and Origins
The origins of the Labrador Retriever are from Canada; it was raised and bred during the 19th century in the peninsula of Labrador, obviously this is where the dog breed got its name.
The Labrador closest ancestor is the Saint John’s Water Dog, which comes from the crossing of a native dog breed and hunting dogs from England; it was raised by English fishermen in Newfoundland Island during the 17th century. So we can say the Labrador and the Newfoundland Dog’s origins are connected.
There is no doubt that the Labrador was trained, raised and educated in this deserted land. As a result, it has become a very resistant dog that adores the water.
The Labrador as a retriever dog
The creation of this dog breed actually comes as a result of an ambiguity during the 19th century, when it was endangered. The arrival of the Labrador into the old continent was due to some actions taken by the Newfoundland Island’s administration to decrease the amount of dogs on the island. During this period, fishing was almost industrial, so the dogs were no longer needed for this task.
In the year 1870, Governor Edwards decided to decrease the number of dogs on the island; the law stipulated that there was only one dog allowed per home. So many dogs became stray dogs that wandered near the seaports where British boats docked.
So, this is how English hunters notice this dog breed which had incredible resistance and enjoyed retrieving everything its owner threw, even if it meant diving in deep and cold waters. The Labrador Retriever began to be imported to England in the early 19th century.
This dog breed was raised by some English noblemen, including the 1st Earl of Malmesbury. To him we owe the birth of the first Labrador specimen like we know nowadays, in the year 1885; its name was Buccleuch Avon and had a black-colored coat. Four years later, the first golden-colored Labrador was born, which became popular by 1920. And during the 1830s the brown-colored Labrador was raised.
Due to its hunting and retriever skills, the Labrador Retriever was highly popular in England, and even was raised by George VI, King of the United Kingdom. The Kennel Club officially recognized this breed in 1903, but the first standard is from 1916, and was partially modified during 1950. However the standard of the FCI is from 1989. Nowadays, the Labrador is one of the most popular dogs in the World, especially in England, the US and Western Europe.
Labrador Retriever: Physical Characteristics
The Labrador is a large-sized retriever dog, although it is not very muscled. According to FCI’s rule number 1222 from 12/01/2011, the males must height 22-23 inches (56-57 cm) and females 21-22 inches (54-56 cm). The weight is not restricted to the standard, but it should be between 66-77 lb (30-35 kg) on females and 77-88 lb (35-40 kg) on males.
The head is wide, solid and pointy with a large black-colored muzzle. The eyes are almond-shaped and can be brown or hazelnut-colored. The ears are triangle-shaped and hang lightly a little backwards over its head. The Labrador Retriever has a wide and deep chest.
The coat is rough, thick, wooly and soft; we can find it in different colors, such as:
- Brown (Chocolate)
- Gold (Yellow)
It is always one-colored and it has an undercoat which is waterproof. The tail is medium-sized, thick on the base and thinner in the point; it is covered with thick short hair.
The Labrador is a very active dog and needs a lot of exercise.
How long can a Labrador Retriever live?
It has a lifespan of 12-13 years, but it can reach 15 years of age. Generally, it is a robust dog with excellent health. Although the Labrador has a tendency to overeat and this could lead to obesity. So you must be careful with its diet, especially during adulthood; a poor nutrition could cause heart problems.
There is a misconception over osteoarthritis in Labradors, it is believed that it comes from hereditary conditions, but there are actually two main causes:
- Bad habits during puppyhood (excessive jumping, use of stairs or slippery floors);
- Poor nutrition, too many proteins from cereal flour and too many carbohydrates on dog food (dry or wet) which can be processed at high temperatures therefore the components lose their nutritional value.
Joint diseases are rare in Labradors (a rate of 20%), for this reason we can say osteoarthritis is not a hereditary disease, like it usually happens in other large-size dog breeds.
In the UK and the US, this dog breed tends to suffer from progressive retinal atrophy, this disease could lead to blindness, and starts to manifest around 5-6 years of age.
Labrador Retriever: Training
The Labrador Retriever is very easy to train; the key is to be a coherent owner. It is a restless and obedient dog, and a fast learner. We should keep in mind that during puppyhood the Labrador is a compulsive chewer, it chews everything within its reach.
Therefore you must teach it not to bite furniture, remote controllers, clothing, etc. In order to prevent this behavior you must provide your pet dog with toys and games to keep it busy, and so it can learn to relieve its passion for chewing.
This is a dog that needs a lot of exercise; remember that it is restless and requires a lot of interaction with its owner. The Labrador is the perfect pet for everyone, but if your intention is having a sedentary dog, you should prepare yourself for your home’s complete destruction. If this fluffy dog gets bored it will find something to entertain itself.
As we mentioned before, one peculiarity of this dog breed is its versatility. The Labrador can be a wonderful companion, hunting or retriever dog. It can be trained with excellent results as a guide dog to lead blind people, diabetics or people that suffer from convulsions or seizures.
Besides, it can be trained as a drug or explosive detection dog, or water rescue dog.
Labrador Retriever: Temperament
The first thing that comes to mind when you look a Labrador in the eyes is that it is an affectionate and smart dog. It has an alert look on its face, it overflows with joy and it is very sociable, these are the attributes that will steal your heart. At the same time, it is a simple but elegant dog with a brave temperament but also discrete. It loves to socialize with its family and especially with its owner.
The Labrador Retriever is not aggressive; this makes it the perfect pet for a family, because it feels like another member. However, it should not have a sedentary or lonely life, it could suffer a lot. Behind its docile and good personality, it hides the soul of an athlete; it is a dog that radiates energy.
Like many other dogs, it is very territorial, but it is not a guardian dog. It can warn you with some barking, but it will never be aggressive, not even with other dogs.
Labrador Retriever: Breeders
There are specialized breeders in the US, the UK, Canada and Australia, but you can also find your Labrador in New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, India and South Africa.
If you want a Labrador Retriever without any diseases or health problems, you should not trust sellers with low-priced dogs and also sellers that ask for too much money.
The documentation you should ask a breeder when you buy a puppy, is to check the dog’s pedigree and also that it does not suffer from any diseases from the “Retrievers” group.
Labrador Retriever: Certified Documentation
- Pedigree Certificate
- Hip Dysplasia Medical Exam
- Heart Medical Exam
- Eye Medical Exam
- Elbow Dysplasia Medical Exam
As we said before, a Labrador is a dog that enjoys the company of its family, especially with children. During adulthood, it can be a reliable and sweet playmate.
However during puppyhood, it is necessary to pay extra attention because it could be wild, rough and could hurt little children during playtime. With strangers it is sociable, do not be surprised when you see your Labrador jumping around to get some cuddles or just to lick their face.
Labrador Retriever: Price, and Puppies For Sale
The price of a Labrador Retriever puppy can vary depending on its pedigree and in many occasions on how much money the salesman or breeder wants to make.
A Labrador puppy can cost between 700-1200 dollars, 600-1000 English pounds; it is very difficult to find one at a cheaper price if it has all the proper documentation and pedigree certificate.
Now that we have mentioned the most important aspects, you can go to your new four-legged friend, who is certainly waiting for you.
Labrador Retriever: Video
You may be interested in reading another article related to other dog breeds such as:
- Maremma-Abruzzese Sheepdog
- Greenland Dog
- White Swiss Shepherd Dog
- Labrador Retriever
- Alaskan Malamute
- Bavarian Mountain Hound
- Basset Hound